Championing Education - Three months of relentless cuts and reforms
Since 11 May, the Conservative/Liberal Democrat Coalition Government has embarked on a wide ranging and rapid programme of reform and cuts. How have schools and colleges been affected by the Coalition Government’s programme?
11 May – David Cameron becomes Prime Minister.
12 May – Conservative and Lib Dem Coalition Agreement published. Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) abolished. Department for Education (DfE) established. Michael Gove appointed Secretary of State for Education.
14 May – Building Schools for the Future (BSF) and Primary Capital programmes frozen.
20 May – Coalition Government Programme published in full; Chancellor of the Exchequer announces establishment of a Commission to examine the long-term affordability of public sector pensions.
24 May – Chancellor announces initial ‘modest cuts’ of £6.2bn to non-front-line services in 2010/11. Treasury cuts £704 million from devolved administrations and £780 million from local authorities in England.
Secretary of State announces abolition of Becta.
Cuts made to the Home Access Initiative, removing subsidised access to ICT equipment for children in low-income
households, and Harnessing Technology grants for schools abolished to find ‘free’ schools.
25 May – Queen’s Speech. Two bills on education – an immediate Academies Bill and an Education Bill to follow in the
26 May – Secretary of State writes letter to every headteacher in England inviting them to become an academy school.
28 May – Secretary of State announces Qualifications and Curriculum Development Agency (QCDA) to be scrapped.
2 June – Secretary of State announces the General Teaching Council for England (GTCE) to be scrapped.
7 June – Prime Minister’s speech on public finances.
Additional funding for one-to-one tuition in maths and English scrapped.
Gifted and Talented, Every Child a Reader and Every Child a Writer programmes cut.
Grants to support extended services abolished.
Academic diplomas in humanities, sciences and languages scrapped.
Cuts to 14-19 diplomas and related programmes, advice and support.
New primary curriculum, PSHE, citizenship and RE curriculum scrapped.
Abolition of capital grants linked to specialist school redesignation.
8 June – Chancellor initiates public consultation on cuts to public services.
9 June – Universal free school meals programme scrapped.
14 June – Lord Young commences review to reduce statutory provisions in relation to health and safety law.
15 June – Coalition Government halts the implementation of the Independent Safeguarding Authority Vetting and Barring Scheme intended to safeguard children, young people and vulnerable adults.
18 June – Invitation issued to existing independent schools and others to establish ‘free schools’.
20 June – John Hutton to undertake ‘independent review’ of public sector pensions. Chancellor of the Exchequer states that
public sector pensions are not affordable.
22 June – Chancellor’s Emergency Budget statement cuts the value of public sector workers’ pensions with switch from RPI to
CPI indexation. The Chancellor also announces a two-year pay freeze for all public sector workers.
23 June – Department for Education confirms that final year of 2008/11 teachers’ pay award will be honoured.
24 June – Government announces Spending Challenge and invites public sector workers to identify areas for cutting public
30 June – Secretary of State confirms the dissolution of the school workforce Social Partnership which delivered unprecedented pay and conditions of service gains for teachers, headteachers and support staff in schools.
£40 million cuts halt Training and Development Agency (TDA) programmes for workforce development and access
for support staff to training and qualifications.
5 July – Secretary of State publishes the first in a series of five inaccurate lists on cuts to the Building Schools for the
Future (BSF) programme.
6 July – DfE asks Dame Clare Tickell to identify reforms to the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS).
7 July – First meeting of the DfE ‘Education Partnership’ held with employers and unions, but terms of reference not
9 July – General public invited to participate in the Spending Challenge by putting forward proposals for cutting public
19 July – NASUWT hosts highly successful public rally and lobby of Parliament challenging the cuts to the BSF programme.
Will Hutton initiates a call for evidence to inform the Coalition Government’s Review of Fair Pay in the Public Sector.
Secretary of State initiates consultation on changes to the School Teachers’ Pay and Conditions Document 2010 refusing to introduce clear criteria to regulate access to the leadership spine.
Secretary of State proposes to disapply the School Teachers’ Review Body mechanism in order to impose a cap on the pay of school leaders.
20 July – Coalition Government announces abolition of requirement for collaborative planning by local authorities for school
and college-based 16-19 education and training provision and establishes the unelected Young People’s Learning Agency as the single funding agency for colleges.
22 July – DfE announces that the national child safety database ContactPoint will be closed on 6 August.
26 July – Academies Act 2010 survives its indecently hasty parliamentary passage to Royal Assent. DfE initiates consultation on changes to the system for school funding and the introduction of an uncosted pupil premium.
Department for Communities and Local Government announces intention to sweep